for exchange and
The British Museum works with a range of partners in national, regional and independent museums across Ghana to share skills, expertise and knowledge.
Since 2007 the Africa Programme has organised more than 12 in-country training workshops focusing on core activities such as collections care, documentation and display. This programme enables the participants to implement positive changes in their own museums, generating confidence and building new practical skills.
Map of Ghana showing the locations
of partner organisations
David Owusu Darkwah (Manhyia Palace Museum) and Patricia Amo (Prempeh II Jubilee Museum) using a viewfinder to describe parts of Kumasi Fort.
Hagar Kofie (Armed Forces Museum) and Gideon Agyare (University of Ghana, Legon) looking at a pattern finder at Prempeh II Jubilee Museum.
Honour Arku (Volta Regional Museum) and Christina Fofie (Armed Forces Museum) using feely bags to describe and draw mystery objects.
Local school students on an interactive tour at Ghana Armed Forces Museum.
Getting interactive in Ghana
As part of the Africa Programme’s strong relationship with Ghana, the latest in a series of dynamic workshops for museum professionals was held in Kumasi during March 2013. Participants from across the city were joined by colleagues from Ho, Legon and Ntonso.
The workshop focused on interactive educational techniques and built on the knowledge and skills base developed over the last few years. At the end of the week, local school students were able to experience new thematic tours that explored the historic fort building and fascinating collections of the Ghana Armed Forces Museum.
Partners have also been making use of their special teaching collections, created during a previous workshop, as part of the ongoing development of their educational provision. Outreach sessions in local schools use carefully selected handling objects to teach Ghanaian archaeology, Asante arts and culture, and aspects of army life.
The Ghana workshop team at the Armed Forces Museum, March 2011
Gideon Agyare (University of Ghana, Legon), Justice Brobbey and Gordon Frimpong (Manhyia Palace Museum) cleaning the colours hall, March, 2011
Nii Ayi Amu (National Science Museum) and Hagar Fofie (Armed Forces Museum), preparing regimental colours for display, March, 2011
Issifu Mohammed (Armed Forces Museum), Olivette Barnette (National Museum, Sierra Leone) and Gideon Agyare (University of Ghana, Legon) making insect traps at Ghana Armed Forces museum, March, 2011
Patricia Amo (Premeh II Jubilee Museum) working on a leopard skin; part of the ceremonial uniform of a Drum Major. The leopard was caught in Kumase around 1900
Honour Arku (Volta Regional Museum) cleaning the colours of the West African Frontier Force Gold Coast Regiment.
Nii Ayi Amu (National Science Museum) mounting silver bugles
The completed Drum Hall display, March 2010
(left to right) Heidi Cutts (British Museum), Lieutenant Colonel Affram (COO), Dr. Gavua (University of Ghana, Legon), Lieutenant Colonel Lawluvi (CLO) and Major M.O. Tweneboa -Kodua (rtd) at the AFM open day
Preserving Ghana’s cultural heritage
A strong partnership developed over the past two years with the Armed Forces Museum (AFM) has established an excellent model for learning and exchange. This centrally located museum in Kumase is housed in the only inland fort in Ghana.
A series of structured workshops with participants drawn from the different partners has transformed some key displays and work continues on the documentation and digitisation of important historical collections of objects and photographs.
This successful collaboration would not have been possible without the dedication and hard work of the museum staff, the inspiring leadership of the curator and major support and encouragement from senior officers of the Northern Command.
The Fabric of a Nation display at the British Museum, February 2007
Culture and Proverbs section of the display at the British Museum, February 2007
Aba Atta-Quayson (University of Ghana, Legon) installing The Fabric of a Nation exhibition at the Department of Archaeology Museum, University of Ghana, Legon, March 2007
Gertrude Aba Mansah Eyifa Dzidzienyo (University of Ghana, Legon) in front of the finished display celebrating Ghana’s 50th anniversary of independence, March 2007
The exhibition team, University of Ghana, Legon, March 2007
Joshua Agyekum (British Museum) and Queen Mother opening The Fabric of a Nation at Wardown Park Museum, Luton, August 2009
Weaving, dyeing and making course, part of The Fabric of a Nation public programme, Brent Museum, February 2011
Artist Seiwa Cunningham (left) running a textile workshop with the local community, part of the preparation for The Fabric of a Nation exhibition at Brent Museum, August 2010
Celebrating the Fabric of a Nation
A pioneering project undertaken by staff from the Africa Programme working in partnership with the Department of Archaeology (now the Department of Archaeology and Heritage Studies) at the University of Ghana, Legon to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Ghanaian independence in 2007.
This collaborative research project sourced two collections of printed textiles, one for each institution, which were displayed in complementary exhibitions at the British Museum and at the University of Ghana. The exhibition installation in Ghana was supported by an Africa Programme training workshop for University staff and students.
The British Museum version of The Fabric of a Nation subsequently travelled to six venues across the UK as part of the Museum in the UK programme ending its tour at Brent Museum in north London. The displays of beautiful wax and ‘fancy’ cloths inspired community projects and supported activities for visitors of all ages.